A long, long time ago, John Oxenford wrote a British farce called "A Day Well Spent." That served as the inspiration for Johann Nestroy, a Viennese playwright who penned a work using the same subject matter. While on a trip to Austria, Thornton Wilder happened to see a revival of
Nestroy's play (or so the legend goes, as related by Viennese Otto Preminger, who saw that play in the 1920s) and appropriated it as the 1938 flop "The Merchant of Yonkers." It was then revised and presented as "The Matchmaker" in 1955 and became a hit, with Robert Morse repeating his original
Broadway role in the film. The picture was made later as the musical play and movie HELLO DOLLY. ...